Top News & Analysis Florida

  • MIAMI-- A Florida man was charged Wednesday with smuggling dinosaur fossils into the United States, including a nearly complete Tyrannosaurus Bataar skeleton from Mongolia, federal prosecutors said.

  • WASHINGTON-- Cuba's surprise decision to make it easier for citizens to leave the country doesn't mean Cubans can book tickets on commercial planes and head for Miami. "This may end up being ado about nothing," said a Cuban-immigration expert, Jose Azel of the University of Miami's Institute for Cuban and Cuban American Studies.

  • ROGERS, Ark.-- A new $10 million plastics recycling facility is planned for Rogers, Ark. and the company says it will hire up to 350 workers. Nextlife Asset Recovery Services announced Wednesday that it will open a headquarters and processing plant and that it will supply several companies with resin that's used to manufacture new consumer plastic items.

  • At the University of Cincinnati, 200 students were expected to turn out to watch the second debate between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. "It goes without saying that the knives were out," said Karim Aladmi, a 21- year-old international affairs major from Dayton, Ohio, who wore a suit and tie for the occasion.

  • Read ahead to see what they are, and find out what employment data, industries and companies are located there to make them top destination states.

  • HAMILTON, Bermuda-- Fast-moving Hurricane Rafael was barreling past Bermuda on Tuesday night, driving gusty winds and pelting rain as its center traveled east of the storm-hardened British Atlantic territory. By 8 p.m. EDT, Rafael was a Category 1 hurricane with winds of 85 mph as its spinning center was located about 115 miles east-southeast of Bermuda.

  • HAVANA-- For the first time since the height of the Cold War more than half a century ago, Cuba is giving its people the freedom to leave the country without government permission, scrapping the detested exit visa that kept many from traveling outside the communist nation for even a few days. said Mercedes Delgado, a 73- year-old retiree. "

  • KENNEBUNK, Maine-- The first batch of men charged with being clients of a woman accused of turning her Zumba dance studio into a brothel included a former mayor and men from more than a dozen towns in Maine, as well as one each from Massachusetts and New Hampshire.

  • OWENSBORO, Ky.-- An Owensboro, Ky. man has been sentenced to eight years in prison and ordered to pay $1.6 million in restitution for a scheme to defraud investors in three states. Judge Joseph H. McKinley Jr. also Tuesday ordered 28- year-old Cory B. George to forfeit contents of three bank accounts totaling about $484,000 to be applied toward final restitution.

  • NEW YORK-- Social media will be a big component of a new program announced by Disney Wednesday in which the company's parks in California and Florida will feature weekly surprise themes and events.

  • CHICAGO-- Houston, San Francisco and South Florida are bidding for the 2016 and 2017 Super Bowls. NFL owners will vote next May between San Francisco _ the 49 ers are building a new stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., _ and South Florida for the 50th Super Bowl in 2016. The loser of that race will then compete with Houston for hosting the 2017 game.

  • LOS CABOS, Mexico-- Hurricane Paul weakened into a tropical storm Tuesday as it neared landfall on a sparsely populated stretch of Mexico's southern Baja peninsula.

  • LOS CABOS, Mexico-- Hurricane Paul was weakening rapidly and was "barely a hurricane" as it raced toward landfall Tuesday on a sparsely populated stretch of Mexico's southern Baja peninsula.

  • There are lots of ways fungus could have gotten inside the Massachusetts compounding pharmacy whose steroid medication has been linked to a lethal outbreak of a rare fungal form of meningitis. Company spokesman Andrew Paven said by email that criminal investigators from the Food and Drug Administration were at the pharmacy in Framingham, Mass., on Tuesday.

  • OMAHA, Neb.-- CSX Corp. reported a 2 percent dip in its third-quarter profit and revenue Tuesday because the railroad delivered fewer carloads of coal and crops, and fuel surcharge revenue declined. The Jacksonville, Fla.- based railroad made $455 million, or 44 cents per share. That's down from $464 million, or 43 cents per share in the same period a year ago.

  • TALLAHASSEE, Fla.-- Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi is refusing to back down in her feud with the GOP- controlled Legislature when it comes to $300 million intended to help homeowners. She did not ask for spending approval over the state's share of a national $25 billion settlement with five of the nation's largest mortgage lenders.

  • LOS CABOS, Mexico-- Hurricane Paul weakened to a Category 1 storm as it raced toward landfall Tuesday on a sparsely populated stretch of Mexico's southern Baja peninsula.

  • KALAMAZOO, Mich.-- Medical device maker Stryker Corp. said Tuesday that it reached a deal to buy privately held Surpass Medical Ltd. for $100 million in cash, plus up to $35 million in milestone payments.

  • HEMPSTEAD, N.Y.-- Republican White House challenger Mitt Romney conferred with his debate practice partner while President Barack Obama exercised before his final study review for Tuesday's debate, both hoping it would help them pull ahead in the razor-tight race.

  • NEW YORK-- A Republican-leaning independent group supporting Mitt Romney's presidential bid is spending $11.1 million on new television ads aimed at women. The group planned to air the new ad on national and local cable stations, and in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia.